United Launch Alliance (ULA), a joint venture floated by Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co, has bagged a contract worth $882million for launching satellites for the US Air Force with Delta IV and Atlas V rockets. The contract is effective from 1 October and includes launch capability, mission, integration, base and range support, maintenance, depreciation on equipment, mission assurance, program management, systems engineering and launch site and range operations during the 2016 fiscal year, according to US Defense Department. The usage of Atlas V rockets will enable the US Defense Department to compete for military and spy satellite launch contracts. ULA is poised for its latest launch this week and this is its 100th mission this week.
A compromise defense policy bill in Congress would bar the purchase of more Russian-made rocket engines to launch U.S. military satellites, clearing the way for competitive bids for 14 future launches, senior congressional aides said on Tuesday.
For months, a powerful U.S. senator has been pushing for details of a murky deal under which a Russian manufacturer supplies the rocket engines used to launch America’s spy satellites into space.